The Mount Prison

Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 12th July 2022.

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Photo of Daisy Cooper Daisy Cooper Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Health and Social Care)

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference to the Annual Report of the Independent Monitoring Board at HMP The Mount, published in May 2022, what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of (a) staffing levels and (b) prisoner welfare at HMP The Mount.

Photo of Stuart Andrew Stuart Andrew Assistant Whip, The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIP) provides invaluable independent scrutiny and found that despite some improvements in core functioning, officer shortages were an ongoing issue predominantly due to high volumes of COVID related absences and that 40% of staff at that time could not be deployed to operational duties. This directly impacted upon the regime offer for prisoners.

Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS) are currently supporting the prison through the Operational Stability Panel by offering incentivised payments to staff to cover existing shortfalls. Recruitment of prison officers remains a focus and campaigns continue to be advertised to attract new staff.

Prisoner welfare is monitored by residential officers, with systems in place to ensure the most vulnerable prisoners are offered support through keywork and assessment, care in custody and teamwork (ACCT) processes. Prisoner safety and welfare is a top priority of the Governor and Prison Group Director. HMIP found that outcomes in terms of prisoner safety had improved since the last inspection in 2018.

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